On September 17, 1953 in East Chicago, Indiana, Ulysses Lee Bridgeman was born. In 1971, he was a member of the East Chicago Washington High School basketball team with an undefeated record of 29-0 and also won the Indiana state high school championship. He attended the University of Louisville, where he played guard/forward, and was drafted by the Lakers in 1975 ….. then immediately traded to the Milwaukee Bucks (with two other players) for Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. From there, Bridgeman spent a successful 12 years in the NBA. After retiring, the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. member invested his money in franchises like the Wendy’s fast food chain. Fast forward to today. Bridgeman now owns over 160 Wendy’s including the growing number of Chili’s of 118 branches and counting. In addition to that food chain accomplishment, he is also the president of his own company : Bridgeman Foods, LLC. He owns a stake in Black Bear beverages ( a soda produced in Milwaukee), elected for the Wisconsin Hall of Fame, sits on the PGA board, and is reportedly worth $240 MILLION.
While Junior Bridgeman did indeed become a famous ball player.. he also had a back up plan; a plan that would help sustain the future of himself and his family for years to come. Our limits to what we feel is ‘achieved success’ (monetary wise) shouldn’t always be narrowed down to that of the popular : a celebrity (music, acting etc.), doctor, lawyers etc., but to infinite possibilities. While I’m not knocking those occupations BY ANY MEANS, they are all great!, I want folks to be inspired in seeing that there are other places we can have our faces. The sky is the limit! Let’s take advantage of that…
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